MOSCOW — A member of the Russian protest group Pussy Riot said Tuesday he’s recovering after two weeks in intensive care for a suspected poisoning while a fellow activist suggested he could have been targeted for looking into the killings of Russian journalists in Africa.

Pyotr Verzilov has been at Berlin’s Charite hospital since arriving from Moscow, where he had been previously treated. Verzilov tweeted that he only fully regained consciousness three days ago after being in a “black hole” for the previous 12 days.

German doctors treating Verzilov say reports he was poisoned are “highly plausible,” but stressed they can’t say how this might have occurred or who was responsible.

His friend and fellow Pussy Riot activist Nadezhda Tolokonnikova said German doctors were unable to determine what sickened Verzilov because any possible toxin had been washed out of his body during his treatment at a Moscow hospital.

Tolokonnikova said that doctors at a Moscow clinic told her they couldn’t find traces of any known medicine or poison in his blood.

She said she believes Verzilov could have been poisoned because of his political activism or his investigation into the killing of three Russian journalists in Central African Republic in July.

Exiled Russian tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky, who financed the Russian journalists’ work, said they were looking into a private Russian security firm known as Wagner that operates in CAR.

The Wagner company is linked to Yevgeny Prigozhin, a St. Petersburg entrepreneur dubbed “Putin’s chef” because his restaurants hosted President Vladimir Putin’s dinners with foreign dignitaries.

U.S. special counsel Robert Mueller has indicted Prigozhin and members of a “troll farm” he allegedly funded for waging “information warfare” against the United States through social media platforms and internet-based media.

Tolokonnikova said journalists who had investigated Prigozhin’s business interests had faced threats in the past.


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